6 Signs It’s Time to Move On From Your Job (Illustrated by Dogs)

According to the numbers released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in January 2012, the median number of years employees stayed with their employer was 4.6.

That means, if we humans typically spend 40+ years working, and we switch jobs every four or five years, we’ll have 9 or 10 jobs by the time we retire.

That’s a mind-boggling number of jobs! We tend to switch early and often while we’re younger, which makes sense. Right after college, we’re getting our feet wet. Seeing what fits, and what doesn’t. Then we get smarter about looking only for jobs we connect to.

But with every job, there comes a time to move on. Here are 6 signs it might be your time. The dogs are helping illustrate each point.

  • 6 Signs It’s Time to Move On 1 of 7
    6 SIGNS



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

  • You Dread Mondays 2 of 7
    DREAD MON

    Allow me to set a scene. It's Sunday night, and you're winding down for the evening, saying goodnight to the weekend, and mentally preparing yourself for the week ahead.

     

    Let's do a gut check. How do you feel?

     

    If there's a pit deep within you, a nagging uneasy feeling, it might be time to move on. If you can't sleep on Sundays because you dread Mondays with a fiery passion, it might be time to move on. If your mood changes drastically as you take your last bite of dinner Sunday night, listen to that.



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

  • You’re Crabby 3 of 7
    CRABBY

    If more than one colleague is asking you what's wrong, or you're hurting your work-friends' feelings when you interact, it's probably time to start looking for something new. Understanding when you're at this point is crucial because the longer you stay after you get crabby, the worse your recommendations will be. You want to exit before you get to this point! Remember those report cards from elementary school? You want to score high on the "plays well with others" list.



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

  • You Produce Lower Quality Work 4 of 7
    LOWER QUALITY WORK

    Speaking of report cards, you want to make a career switch before you start letting the quality of your work suffer. Try to leave when you're still an A-student, so you can go be an A-student elsewhere. It's really easy to start getting frustrated, and justify slacking during your workday, but that won't turn out well. In fact, if you do more than what's expected of you when you're looking to switch, you'll bolster your confidence when you interview, and you'll get a better reference.



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

  • You Count the Hours Until 5 5 of 7
    COUNT THE HOURS

    In one job, I kept a countdown of "hours until quittin' time" and another of "days until Friday" -- I knew I couldn't stay there much longer when I started counting the days until my Christmas vacation... starting in October. If you've ever found yourself looking at the clock at 10am, or counting the minutes until you can safely leave for work, you've already checked out mentally. Find a new project at work, something you can dive into, and get busy! Or look for other strategies to keep your motivation up.



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

  • You Start Thinking About Crazy Exit Strategies 6 of 7
    EXIT STRATEGIES

    Maybe you buy a lottery ticket, thinking, "if I win, then I'll never have to work again!" Or you fall for a get-rich-quick scheme. Or you read the emails that fall (rightly) into your spam filter with a little more interest. These are signs of desperation. Signs you need a change.



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

  • You’ve Hit a Plateau 7 of 7
    PLATEAU

    Maybe you can't find anything new to contribute. Maybe you're stuck because you worked very hard to get to this point and the systems you've established are working --- without your input. The time to leave is when you have nothing more to contribute. This happens often in startups, because you work so hard at the beginning, and there are so many fires to put out, but after a few years, if you're lucky, you don't have fires to put out anymore. And you come to realize something really important: those were the fires that drove you, and now that they're gone, so is yours. On to the next big thing!



    Photo via Frugal Portland (that's me!)

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